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Project information

Stressed out

Research reveals stress as the single biggest factor affecting the quality of life for autistic people and their families causing significant impact across all aspects of their life. We will develop a microsite and information providing tools and effective strategies for dealing with stress.

January 2017 - December 2017

Charity information: Research Autism

Research Autism logo
  • Need


    3.5 million families in the UK are affected by autism. Autism is characterised by communication difficulties using language effectively and forming relationships with other people. Stress is the single biggest factor affecting quality of life for autistic people and their families, causing significant impact across all key aspects of their life. Despite wide recognition that autistic people are particularly susceptible to stress, there is little research or information on coping strategies.


    We are holding a Stress Summit to listen to autistic people, their families as well as leading scientists and researchers. We will explore knowledge gaps and identify research priorities. We will then commission research which will identify practical tools and strategies for dealing with stress. Our project will be to develop and produce a Microsite and a series of Essential Guides aimed at providing the autism community key tools and strategies to deal with stress

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Effective Strategies for dealing with autism


    » Hold a Stress Summit to identify gaps in research and the vital next steps
    » Commission research to evaluate practical strategies to deal with stress for everyone living with autism

    What success will look like

    Referencing of our research on Stress, and information materials in new research
    Number of visits to Stress Microsite
    Number of Essential Guides downloaded

    Aim 2

    Parents will become less stressed as they are able to recognise the trigger points


    » Develop a Stress Microsite (specific website)
    » Develop and disseminate Essential Guides on Stress
    » Run a series of Q & As with acknowledged professionals in the autism community for families of people with autism and people with autism

    What success will look like

    Number of Essential Guides downloaded
    Numbers accessing Q & As
    Feedback from families of people with autism

    Aim 3

    Professionals will be less stressed and have more confidence in working with autistic people


    » Promote and develop specific Essential Guides for people working with autism

    What success will look like

    Number of professionals referencing our materials
    Number downloading information materials
    Feedback from professional working with people with autism

    Aim 4

    Ensure people with autism and the people that work with them are aware of these vital materials


    » We will launch a media campaign and press release, publicise in relevant professional magazines and publicise on relevant websites

    What success will look like

    Numbers accessing the information website
    Numbers downloading materials
    Positive feedback from parents
    Follow-up Summit later on in year

  • Impact


    Less stress for people with autism, their parents and the professionals who work with them will enable coping with stress better by recognising trigger points and developing coping strategies. In the longer term this will provide health and well being.


    Not attracting a wide and large enough pool of attendees at Stress Summit - will ensure that the invited audience has plenty of notice and publicity
    Difficulties in getting funding for research which will slow the project down - We will plan research in easily fundable stages, so we can begin work more quickly.
    People with autism and their families not knowing about or accessing the information - We will run an effective awareness campaign and regular promotion with relevant charities and media


    We will send a monthly email that will detail ongoing and forthcoming activities as well as progress on the project generally and what has been achieved so far.
    Provide a link on our website leading to the microsite and information materials
    Raise awareness through social media

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £25,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £10,000 Microsite Populating microsite, design and IT support
      £13,000 Essential Guide 5 essential Guides - for parents, people with autism, professionals working with them
      £2,000 Awareness campaign Media launch and campaign, email publicity to database, design and IT and hard copy design
  • Background


    Nationwide - all of UK and world wide. People with autism and their families cross all socio-economic boundaries.


    700,000 people with autism in the UK, 1% of population of world has autism and they can and do access our site and materials. Parents of people with autism affecting 3.5 million families in the UK.
    Professionals working with people with autism
    Policy makers and politicians

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Research Autism is the only charity exclusively dedicated to research and into treatments and therapies in autism. We ensure that people with autism are consulted when we are planning research or information materials. We have the active support of some of the world's leading figures in autism and research.
    We are the only charity it has the NHS Accrediation for our information services

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Dr Richard Mills . Research Director Of Research Autism

    Ccommissions the research, lead the research steering group and ensure that the outcomes are acted on.

    Bernard ~Fleming, Information Services Manager

    Evaluate research in order to write the information on the website as well as the information materials

    Digby Tantam, Chair Of Research Autism's Scientific Advisory Group

    Will make decisions on who conducts research, research programme and be part of the research steering group


The monthly cost of our information service - we receive no government or statutory funding

Stress can make me feel near suicidal. Exchausted. Inadequate.

Karen - an autistic adult